I have always believed that teaching is one half science (left-brain) and one half art (right brain). The pendulum in education swings between those two extremes. The science is in knowing the research – knowing what should work and why. There is no question that right now the pendulum of education has swung far into the left brain - the research and skill areas. Some teachers might think it’s actually struck there! But teachers should take full advantage of this time in our history. They should soak in the knowledge that comes from research. They should use their own on-going action research in their classroom to inform practice and challenge their assumptions. On the other hand we must never lose the art, the right-brain creativity that is the heart of teaching. The art is in knowing the child – knowing from experience and intuitively what will work. In our country, in our county right now, our perception may be that we are stuck in a left-brained, regimented, compliance mode, but we know that the pendulum will swing back to the middle where diversity of thought will be encouraged to yeild solutions. Being courageous enough to take everything that is offered to us now - while science is the emphasis - and then to integrate that knowledge into what we know to be true, to combine the art and science and to do what has to be done to make sure every child is a success story – Now that is what quality teaching is all about.
If we can model that as teachers, then the next generation of children has the hope of seeing beauty, whimsy and engagement in their work and their lives. They have the hope of understanding the value of relationships, of thinking unconventional thoughts and of making bold leaps in imagination as they find life's meaning, life's calling, in their work. I hope that is the environment that we are building for our children at Chets Creek - a place that is fun and engaging where people regularly laugh and take risks, where relationships and caring about others is the foundation upon which everything else is built and where all of that comes together in increased skill and expertise that drives outstanding results. That is our gift to the next generation of children. May we stand tall in the dawning of this Creative Age.